This article was published in The 30 Second Wine Advisor on Monday, Oct. 15, 2007 and can be found at http://www.wineloverspage.com/wineadvisor2/tswa20071015.php.
Shiraz in Focus
Our Wine Focus feature on Shiraz this month is generating a lot of discussion and tasting reports on this ultimate New World wine from a grape variety that France calls Syrah but that Australia has made its own under a variant moniker.
With the month only midway through, wine lovers from all over the world - including a hearty band of Australians - have posted hundreds of thoughtful remarks in more than 40 Shiraz-related topics on our WineLovers Discussion Group.
Rather than offering you the usual sermon today, let's launch the new week with a few quick summaries followed by links to specific forum discussions where you're welcome to follow the conversations and cordially invited to join in with comments and tasting notes of your own.
Shiraz: An Introduction and Overview from an Australian Perspective
In defense of Big and Bold Aussie Shiraz
Timeline of the name "Shiraz" in Australia
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Paringa 2004 "Individual Vineyard" South Australia Sparkling Shiraz ($10.99)
Inky-dark purple with a frothy, persistent violet mousse and a lasting bubble stream. Blackberries and blueberries and a whiff of menthol, typical fruit-forward South Australia Shiraz and a prickly and frothy sparkling wine. More appealing than many Sparkling Shiraz at this lower end of the price range. (I saw one under Sarah and Sparky Marquis's sought-after MollyDooker label in the same store for something like $45. I passed.)
FOOD MATCH: Fine for sipping by itself; it made a decent pairing with a dinner salad topped with thin strips of teriyaki-style beef.
VALUE: No complaints at just past $10; as noted, many low-end Sparkling Shiraz are much less appealing.
WHEN TO DRINK: Not a wine made for cellaring, and the 2004 bottle on this vintage suggests it's been rattling around the system for a while. Buy it, drink it, move on.
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This week on WineLoversPage.com
WineBlueBook: Pinot Noir, White Burgundy and more
Our Internet radio "TalkShoe": Going horizontal
WineLovers Discussion Group: Jancis Robinson views the changing wine world
Netscape/Compuserve Community Poll: Most underrated grape?
Last Week's Wine Advisor Index
The Wine Advisor's daily edition is usually distributed on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays (and, for those who subscribe, the FoodLetter on Thursdays). Here's the index to last week's columns:
Malbec another way (Oct. 12, 2007)
Gallo does Malbec (Oct. 10, 2007)
Sweet red revisited (Oct. 8, 2007)
Complete 30 Second Wine Advisor archive:
Wine Advisor FoodLetter: Pasta with broccoli and ... anchovies (Oct. 11, 2007)
Wine Advisor Foodletter archive: